Thursday, 1 September 2011
Happy Birthday Courtesy Of The Taxpayer
Earlier today I drove past Perth prison and was reminded of this.
Am I alone in thinking our prison system is making a mockery of those who are the victims of people convicted of crime?
I do believe there are many people within the prison system who should not be there because they have problems, for which we as a society are responsible and we ought to ensure they receive appropriate treatment or support, but Perth prison is one of Scotland's 'heavy duty' goals, although it now also houses male prisoners serving sentences under 4 years.
But is a prison an environment in which the prison service - a taxpayer funded security service - should encourage birthday parties involving young children? If the Express reporting is to be believed (and I've no good reason to doubt it), then birthday parties take place in private visiting rooms - complete with cake, balloons, presents and songs.
Perth prison is not the only prison in Scotland to provide for such events. The CEO of the Scottish Prison Service:
'All prisons have taken steps to entertain children who are visiting their parents behind bars include toys, books, TVs, game consoles and soft play areas.'
He also revealed that Perth, Polmont and Kilmarnock prisons have party facilities while others can host events in family bonding rooms.
This is one of the times I think my knowledge of social science is severely wanting. Hard working people pay for this while the victims of crime are left isolated. Are birthday parties in prison environments educational?
Never mind though - it's all for the sake of the children. Aye.